Posted by Charles lwuoha, Enugu | 23 August 2019 | 634 times
The South-East Amalgamated Markets Traders Association (SEAMATA) has appealed to the Federal Government to review the period of closure of Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, to 60 days.
The President General of SEAMATA, Chief Gozie Akudolu, made the appeal in a statement made available to newsmen in Enugu on Thursday.
Akudolu lamented the far-reaching effect the long closure of the airport would have on businesses and commercial activities in the South-East; as the airport remains first airport of choice for traders in the region.
He said that traders in the South-East would remain the worst affected while the closure of this airport lasted; “more so, as we approach the end of the year with its attendant rise in tempo of business activities”.
According to him, “It is a public knowledge that this all-important airport remains the gateway of our esteemed members to their business destinations especially outside the country.”
Akudolu noted that the positive advantage of the proximity of the airport to South-East business locations, with the security situation in our country today, cannot be over-emphasised.
“SEAMATA received with rude shock, the devastating news of the closure of Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, first, indefinitely and later for 90 days.
“It will be recalled that the first international flight from this airport in 2013 had our members making-up over 85 per cent of the passengers on board of that inaugural flight.
“Much as the reason for the closure of the airport is to fix the failed portions of the airport run way, that will guarantee the safety of the passengers and the aircrafts.
“It is our considered opinion that this can be effectively and efficiently achieved within less than 60 days,” he said.
The SEAMATA boss also called on all the relevant authorities to professionally establish the cause of the failure of this run way within so short a time of its construction for a lasting solution.
“This is necessary considering the inconveniences the closure of the airport causes the teeming passengers and the huge revenue loss to the government and people as well.
“This is why SEAMATA most humbly and respectfully call on the Federal Government to please review the period of closure of this airport to 60 days,” he added.
The Federal Government through the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) notified airlines, passengers and stakeholders that the runway of the airport would be closed for major repairs by 12 a.m. on Saturday, August 24, 2019.
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